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Fake leprosy sores look nasty

special UV torch shows invisible prayer

soap cross carving

happy and sad leper

Thank you cakes

Zornitca and Joanna lead the puppets

 telling us about leprosy

Shiela tells us a story

Messy Thank you - 25 September 2016 

Messy Church moved in to the church hall, from the sports day last month in the park.

This months theme , 'What’s the point of saying “Thank You”?' makes you think this is a story about healing. Well, it is. But more importantly it is a story about being thankful.

Busy crafting
There were ten lepers in our story: ten lepers who cry out to Jesus for healing, and who through His power and mercy receive healing. Yet, out of the ten, only one thinks to return to Jesus to say thank you. What happens when this man returns demonstrates two important things we can learn about being thankful.

Firstly, it shows us how gratitude pleases God. Jesus did not ask the men to thank him for healing them. He did not demand that they bow at his feet before going to the priest. Nor did he revoke the healing for the nine who did not thank him. But the fact that Jesus did ask “Where are the other nine?” shows that it pleases God when we thank him for what he has done for us.

Secondly, it shows us the kind of gratitude we should display. The Samaritan man turned to thank Jesus as soon as he saw he was healed. He didn’t delay by showing himself to the priest first, going to tell his family what had happened, or even patting himself on the back for the fact that he was now free of the disease. No, he went straight to the one who had healed him and made it all possible. His thanks was immediate. We also read that his thanks was loud! He wanted everyone to know what had happened to him, and he wanted all the glory to go to God.

How quickly and loudly do we offer thanks when Jesus answers our prayers? Do we make sure everyone around us knows what God had done? God’s message is clear. We should have a heart filled to overflowing with thanksgiving to God, and we should also tell God and others how thankful we are! God has done so much for us! He deserves our thanks!

Our range of activities included

Fake leprosy sores, made out of a few bubble circles from the bubble wrap. With a little double-sided tape it was stuck on to our arms, and using face paint to make them horribly yellow pus coloured, and then a little red lip stick blended around the edges to create inflamed infected skin. We talked about how horrible it must have been to be a leper with nobody wanting to talk to you or be near you. What joy the lepers in the story must have felt when healed! How thankful they all should have been!

Invisible thank you prayers, where we wrote prayers of thanks on paper with the uv pens, then read them, using special torches, during the celebration. We can’t see God but we know he is there. WE can see his actions through other people, and how our prayers are not invisible to God: He sees and hears everything.

Soap carving. David Hogg led this activity, taking a bar of soap and carving a cross, a fish or a heart, letting our creative side come out. As the artist Michelangelo said: “I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.” God can make us clean and shape us.

Thank you paperweight, created on smooth pebble stones. A design was drawn on our stone, including the phrase “Thank you”, which was then painted and more detail/outlines added with marker pens. Finally they were sprayed with varnish to help the colours look bright and make it last longer. We thought of the people in our lives who have helped us. Do we remember to thank them? How does God help us when we pray?

Sad and happy leper - using paper human shapes we drew a sad face on one side of our “leper” and a happy face on the other, colouring in the face, hands and feet. Small bits of material were stuck onto the figure as robes, and thin strips used as bandages for head, hands and feet. Small bits of coffee wee sprinkled onto the material, to  look like dirt.

We talked about how nobody wanted to help the lepers because they were afraid of getting the disease from them – how do you think this made the lepers feel? The lepers were poor so they had to use whatever they could find to wrap up their sores – how would you feel if you had to use bits of dirty old rag instead of a nice clean plaster when you fall and cut yourself? What would happen to your cuts? How do you feel when something gets better that has been making you ill?

Thank you cake - We spread a little icing (or chocolate) on top of a cake, then used sweeties to spell out the words THANKYOU. The children took them home to give to someone they wanted to say thank you to. We talked about how it is a blessing to give as well as to receive, about how we can help people who are in need.

Messy eating - People with leprosy often lose the feeling in their hands and fingers, as well as their feet and toes, so they need help need help for all sorts of very ordinary things. Sometimes leprosy can also affect sight, and even hearing.

This challenge for two friends had one blindfold, trying to feed the other and give them a drink following only their partner’s instructions, without making a mess. It was a fun way of trying to eat and drink when you have to depend on someone else’s help and they have to depend on your instructions!!

At the celebration time in the church the puppets led our singing, whilst Shiela Anderson and Rae Hunter told us about Leprosy and how it is spread. Most people wrongly think it is contagious, spread by touch, which is wrong. It seems to spread by someone sneezing over you, a bit like catching a cold.

Nowadays there are simple and effective cures if caught early, preventing the disfiguration the disease causes.   

A hearty meal concluded our afternoon, with Joan Cape and her team busy cooking pasta and a veggie lasagna, with jelly, ice cream and strudel to follow

The November Messy Church will be Sunday October 30th.  4.00 to 6.00pm

For more information on Messy Church

Contact: Joan Cape 674276 capefamily@talktalk.net
              Katrina McDonald  kmcd11@yahoo.co.uk

Starting young at Messy Church
Penicuik: St. Mungo's Parish Church (Church of Scotland). Scottish Charity No SC005838